What does it mean to be alive? It’s a simple question but the answer is one that has taxed brilliant minds over the centuries.
In What Is Life? Lynn Margulis and Dorian Sagan have teamed up to answer the question and the answer is a long but brilliant one.
Why We Love What Is Life?
Lynn is, of course, one of the founders of Gaia Theory and while she and Dorian move from astronomy to geometry to history to pursue their answer, they never lose sight of the connectedness of everything in the biosphere.
We like that the authors are not afraid to stray off the beaten path at times and offer their personal opinion and insight as well as the “canonical” explanation for different ideas.
It’s also wonderfully illustrated and the pictorial content is first rate.
What is Life? may or may not answer your own question of “what does it mean to be alive?” but it will certainly help you ask the right questions to come to your own conclusion.
For that alone, it’s a book that everyone ought to read at some point in their lives.
Dorian and Lynn have worked on other projects you might be interested in too including Microcosmos, Acquiring Genomes and Symbiotic Planet, why not take a look at them now?
You can grab a copy online here.